B-52s fly over all 30 NATO countries in a single day

B-52 Stratofortress bombers ceremonially overflew all 30 NATO countries on Friday, accompanied by allied aircraft in a statement of solidarity.

"Allied Sky" featured four B-52s currently deployed to Royal Air Force Fairford in Britain, NATO officials said.

The strategic bombers traveled to each European NATO country, and in some cases integrated with fighter planes and aerial refueling maneuvers. Two B-52s assigned to the 5th Bomb Wing at Minot, N.D., Air Force Base also flew over Canada and the United States.

Aircraft from Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Turkey and Britain flew along with the B-52s. About 80 aircraft were involved in the event.

"Today's training event demonstrates the United States' powerful commitment to NATO, and Allied solidarity in action," NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said in a statement.

"As U.S. bombers overfly all 30 NATO allies in a single day, they are being accompanied by fighter jets from across the alliance, boosting our ability to respond together to any challenge," Stoltenberg said.

The B-52s in Britain arrived last week from the United States, conducting exercises with Norwegian F-16s and F-22 fighter planes off the coast of Norway.

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